We ate dinner at Hacienda Mexican Grill over on Drew Street tonight. It wasn’t very busy for a Friday night, but I’m all for not having to wait for a table.
They started us off with some chips and salsa.
Loren said the salsa tasted very fresh, though it wasn’t very spicy at all. He ordered the carnitas.
He really enjoyed the dish. Said everything tasted very fresh and flavorful. The pork was very tender. The guacamole had a little kick to it. The rice and beans were standard fare.
I ordered the shrimp chimichanga.
It was rather disappointing. The shrimp tasted as though they had been frozen and quickly defrosted. They just had a taste to them that was not fresh and flavorful. Definitely not good eats.
They had live music tonight, but I’m never sure what the proper etiquette is when they come to your table and play. Should you let your food get cold while you watch and listen or is considered rude to continue eating? Don’t get wrong, they were very good, but I’d just rather not have them focus directly on our table while we’re eating.
Total bill was $24.
Hacienda Mexican Grill
2551 Drew St, Ste 104
Salsa’s Mexican Restaurant recently opened up in the space that was once Albertos and then Lonzalos in Oldsmar. I am so happy now to have a Mexican restaurant close to work.
The menu had the typical fare with lunch specials under $10. I went for the shrimp chimichanga which came with rice and beans.
I enjoyed it. It could have been fried a little longer to make it crispier, but the filling was very tasty. It was covered with a white cheese sauce and all mixed together made for a tasty lunch. I forgot to get a photo of my friend’s lunch. She got a combo with a soft taco and chile relleno. She said they tasted good, but didn’t realize the chile relleno had meat as well as cheese in it. She thought it would just be cheese. She also said the salsa was good.
The service wasn’t that great though. Our waiter spoke very softly, so it was difficult to understand him and once he dropped off our food, we didn’t see him again until we were finished. Total was just under $10. I’ll definitely be back to try some of the other dishes.
Salsas Mexican Restaurant
3970 Tampa Road
Heading out to Tampa tonight to see the musical “Dreamgirls” and stopped at Guadalajara Mexican restaurant for dinner.
Loren likes their chips and salsa.
He got the chicken fajitas which came with rice and beans.
He said it was pretty good. I ordered a chicken chimichanga.
It suffered the fate of so many chimichangas and wasn’t crispy at all. Otherwise, though, the flavor was good. The service was somewhat non-existent. After our waitress brought our food, we didn’t see her again until we were finished. Total bill was $28.
Guadalajara Mexican Restaurant
4502 W Hillsborough Ave
I hate it when I go to a restaurant specifically because I have a coupon only to find out that they’re no longer accepting them. That’s what happened to us tonight at Caramba’s in Dunedin. The $25 Restaurant.com coupon that I downloaded before we left wasn’t being honored anymore.
The waitress brought chips and salsa to the table and Loren and Alex jumped right in. The salsa at Caramba’s is different from a lot of other places. Loren said it was a bit spicier tonight too.
They both ordered fajitas, one chicken and one beef.
They were ok and had plenty for leftovers. I ordered the Combo #4 which is a burrito and chimichanga with rice and beans.
There was a lot of food on the plate and both items were filled with chicken. I was happy to finally get a chimi that was crispy. Overall the food was ok, nothing stood out and the flavors were relatively bland.
They weren’t very busy for a Friday night, but with only one waitress working the dining room and cash register, the service was pretty slow. She also wasn’t very observant, leaving drinks empty and when we asked for more salsa, she didn’t bring more chips even though the basket was empty.
Total dinner for the three of us was $37.
1840 Drew St
Since Los Mexicanos was closed when we tried to go on Labor Day, we decided to head out there tonight. The first thing we noticed upon walking in the door was how loud it was. On the plus side, it means a lot of people are eating there, however, it was rather difficult to hold a conversation.
They brought out some chips and salsa.
It’s not a chunky salsa, but Loren still enjoyed it. He ordered the steak fajitas.
The waitress brought the pan of fajitas to the table along with my entree. She said she’d be right back with the plate that came with the fajitas. Then she disappeared for awhile. She came back and grabbed his empty drink glass and brought it back, before disappearing into the kitchen one more time to get the plate that goes with the fajitas. We were just sitting there stunned. How hard is it to bring all the food to the table?
The fajita meat was tender, but in tiny strips. We weren’t impressed. I ordered the chicken chimichanga dinner. Since it only came with rice, I also ordered a side of refried beans.
If I’ve said it once, I’ll say it a million times, chimichangas should be crispy on the outside. If they’re not crispy, they’re burritos. These were definitely stuffed full of chicken though. Unfortunately, without the crispy exterior, it just lacked the texture I was craving.
Overall, the entire dining experience was just lacking. Sure, there was plenty of food and I probably brought over a pound of it home as leftovers, but neither the quality of the food, nor the service was worth the $27 bill.
38954 US Hwy 19
Tarpon Springs, FL